A chuppah (or huppah) is as much a part of the Jewish wedding ceremony as the breaking of the glass. It is traditionally a simple structure representing the four walls and roof of the couple’s new home. In modern weddings, chuppahs have also become a work of art. They have been transformed into spectacular style statements, and are a key element of the wedding décor.
Photo: Event & Styling by Swank Productions
The biggest consideration is style. Do you want to embrace tradition but give it a modern twist? Maybe you want your wedding décor to be edgy and contemporary. If you’re looking for something special and different, here are….
4 Ways to Make Your Chuppah (Wedding Canopy) Unique
1.Flowers with a Twist
Flowers will always be a popular choice for wedding ceremony decorations, and it’s clear why. Flowers are beautiful, vibrant, and represent nature at it’s finest. To make your floral chuppah really stand out, try the following:
Bold Color Choices
Choose a single bold color such as this fuchsia wedding arch from Style Me Pretty, or add a pop of color to a floral blend with a statement bloom or color choice.
You can also incorporate a spectrum of colors into your chuppah, such as rainbow or pastels. Ariston Flowers created the chuppah above from a vibrant mix of flowers in different colors and textures.
Make a statement with a rich display of beautiful flowers. In Full Bloom executes this look with perfection with an organza fabric drape and lush floral enhancement of garden roses, spray roses, dendrobium orchids, hydrangea, wax flower and draping greenery.
Palm Tree Tropical Chuppah
Nancy Swiezy Events brought a fun and tropical vibe to a wedding ceremony at Angel Orensanz with a unique palm tree chuppah. This is also a beautiful option for a destination wedding.
2.Incorporate Unique Material Into Your Huppah
The chuppah can be the focal point of the ceremony design and lend itself to any setting. Even non-Jewish couples have adopted chuppahs to enhance their event space (the ever-popular wedding canopy). There’s really no limit to what can be created, and a gifted designer can incorporate just about any material. The possibilities are limitless, including:
Glass or Lucite Wedding Canopy
For a sleek and modern look, glass or lucite canopies are the perfect choice, like this striking example from Shira Weinberger. The clear structures also allow for hanging decorations, such as crystal strands, for a real “wow” factor.
Tantawan Bloom showcases creativity by covering the lucite with rings of white roses.
Consider a custom hand-painted silk chuppah to add an elegant, personalized touch to your wedding ceremony. These striking works of art can be used after the wedding to decorate your home as a beautiful and meaningful keepsake wall hanging.
Corinne Soikin Strauss from The Artist’s Studio works with the couple to create their dream chuppah, like the example pictured above.
Marlena Rubin Schwartman from SilkHuppah.com creates completely personalized, hand-painted huppahs. The dramatic, meaningful works of art can be treasured for decades.
Paper flowers are a popular trend in weddings. This custom-designed chuppah from Special Events Magazine is decorated with handmade paper roses and crystals.
Bring on the Bling! This chuppah from Perfect Petals is draped in sparkling crystal.
For a classic Hollywood-inspired wedding ceremony, try a beaded chuppah. Gather the strands to resemble elegant curtains. The choice was perfect for this 40’s and 50’s themed wedding photographed by Domino Arts Photography & Cinematography.
Tulle makes the ultimate bridal statement. This soft and romantic material can be used in place of organza as draping. Match the color to your bridal veil for a truly spectacular result. Photography by H&H Photographers.
Lace combines romance with a vintage feel. This wedding canopy found on Wedding Chicks was made by the couple’s fathers, and decorated by Finch & Thistle Event Design with French lace and a one-sided floral arrangement.
Steel and MetalIf you’re not into soft romance, and would like more of an industrial look (perfect for a loft ceremony) wedding arches can be designed from steel and other metals. This thoroughly modern huppah from Exclusive Events is a tower of steel and glass.
Bohemian Quilt Quilts provide the personalized charm needed for a boho wedding, like this one from Bridal Snob.
For a fall wedding, vibrant red leaves can add a stylish touch to a simple huppah.
Photo: Lauren Ross via Brides Magazine
Trees & Branches
What earthy, outdoor wedding would be complete without a canopy made of trees and branches? The rustic feel and simple design is a perfect complement to the setting.
Photo: Bridal Snob
3.Add a Creative Backdrop
Many modern brides are thinking about their wedding design from their guests’ perspective. The typically “blank space” behind the chuppah is being highlighted with beautiful backdrops made of fabric, crystal strands, suspended flowers, or pretty much anything you can think of!
4.Style Your Huppah With Decorations
Even the simplest chuppah can be jazzed up with just a few design touches.
We love how this couple added streamers, and hanging glass orbs filled with flower buds. Just be sure the decorations are more towards the background and won’t get in the way of your Rabbi or loved ones.
Photo: Ellie Photography via Style Me Pretty
Garlands can make a beautiful addition to a wedding ceremony. This wedding from Style Me Pretty incorporates flower garlands into the lucite chuppah poles.
For the DIY couple, the wedding ceremony is a wonderful place to showcase your skills, like this pinwheel chuppah from Ruffled Blog.
String lights can add an ethereal glow to your wedding ceremony, which can be especially beautiful for an outdoor evening or sunset wedding. Photo via Style Me Pretty.
Traditionally, a chuppah uses a tallit (Jewish prayer shawl) as its covering. Many couples are choosing to incorporate this tradition into their wedding ceremony by hanging the tallit of a loved one on their wedding canopy. This is a wonderful way to honor family members that have passed away. In Full Bloom does this beautifully, also enhancing the satin fabric with dendrobium orchids, wax flower, bells of Ireland, white snow drift cherry blossoms and accents of lily grass.
View More Chuppah Inspiration
Written by Lonni Delane and Cigall Goldman